This post is a request from Miharusshi, check out her anime blog, it has great content. Also this isn’t formatted like my other anime reviews, with history and recommendations. This is just my thoughts on the movie. If you want a recommendation watch another Mamoru Hosoda movie. Now onto the review…
The Straw Hat Pirates visit the luxury island called Omatsuri Island, where spas, beauties and gourmet food can be found. When they reach the island they meet Baron Omatsuri, who challenges them to an Ordeal of Hell. Though there seems to be more to this island than what is seen.
This is not you typical One Piece movie. If you were to watch this movie and then immediately watch the movie Strong World or a really good episode of the show, this movie would not meld as well.
This movie was directed by Mamoru Hosoda and that can be seen immediately through the visuals and soundtrack, but through the story as well. Mamoru Hosoda’s movies usually revolve around families in some way. This made One Piece a good franchise for him to work on, because Luffy’s crew can be considered one big happy family. Sure they may fight, and some of the members may not get along, but at the end of the day they are always there for each other.
The visuals of this movie are definitely something grand compared to other One Piece movies and episodes. There is one scene that stands out with visuals and sounds is when the Toothbrush Moustache Pirate (Yes, that is what he calls his crew) is fleeing from Luffy. This is done to classic chase music and the visuals are perfectly in sync with it. Even the title screen of the movie is just a serene ocean shoot to calming island music. These are thing you would not normally see in a One Piece product.The one thing I found the most surprising about this movie was that Luffy is not the one to save the day. Throughout the movie there is a family that is living on the island and they were hanging around Chopper. When Luffy has been struck by god knows how many arrows, the father of the family, with the encouragement of his daughter is the one to stand up, take aim and kill the monster. I was not expecting that, usually in One Piece Luffy is the one that takes out the main villain and Zoro usually takes out the second in command. This moment is what cements the fact that this is not a typical One Piece episode or movie. If I had to compare this movie to another in a similar situation it would be Lupin the Third and the Castle of Cagliostro. People say the movie is not necessarily a Lupin the Third movie, but it is still a good movie. In the Lupin the Third Castle of Cagliostro movie, they change the characters personalities, this is not done to the One Piece characters, more the mood of the show changes. This is not a normal One Piece movie, this is more of a Mamoru Hosoda movie. This is still a good movie and One Piece fans should watch it, it just isn’t what you would expect from One Piece.
Edit: I don’t know why this paragraph wasn’t included in the original post, but here it is now.
An interesting aspect of this movie is the villain and hero relationship. Baron Omatsuri and Luffy are very similar people. They both love and care for their nakama, doing anything they could to help them. I pitied the villain of this movie, the final scene we hear him speak and you understand why he did what he did. He was lonely and missed his friends, what related him to Luffy was that Luffy would do anything as well to bring back his nakama, even fight a giant plant monster.